Five Actionable Things You Can Do to Increase Your Facebook Page Likes
Facebook has about 1.65 billion active monthly users worldwide. With such a massive audience, you can be certain that there are people on the social media giant who are interested in what you have to offer as a service business.
Perhaps you already have a Facebook page for your business, or perhaps you’re simply considering it and wondering if it is worth the effort and cost to run a page on FB. Either way, one of the biggest challenges that companies face is gathering a following.
Why Likes Are Important
As you likely already know, the way that you utilize Facebook for promotional purposes (asides paid advertising), is to post something people are interested in. They hopefully like, comment and share that post and bring in additional followers/leads. However, before you can reach people, you have to gain those initial likes.
Just any old likes won’t do. You need people who are interested in your business to like your page. For example, if your HVAC business is located in Mobile, Alabama and you gather 1,000 likes from people who live in San Diego, California that is going to do you next to no good at all. Instead, you want to gather followers who are highly targeted, potential customers in your area.
Another reason why you want to gather likes is that it helps your business look more legitimate. If you were considering hiring an HVAC company with 10 likes on their page and no reviews or one with 1200 likes and several reviews, which would you choose? Put yourself in the shoes of your customer and it is easy to see why likes are so important.
How to Increase Likes
There are as many methods out there to increase likes as you can imagine, but some simply work better than others because they are proven.
However, it doesn’t hurt to experiment and try new things either.
Penny Sansevieri, CEO of Author Marketing Experts, recommends that you not only use pictures, but you use the right pictures. “We all know that posts with pictures drive more engagement, but did you know that with the right picture you could boost your engagement by as much as 179%? But the key is finding quality images. So images with stunning views, lovely scenery, smiling faces, you get the idea. If you want some ideas, head on over to Trip Advisor’s page because they’ve really made an art out of using a simple, stunning image and creating a discussion around this. For example a beautiful picture of a waterfall with the simple phrase: “Caption this,” got over 251 likes and 30 shares.”
Of course, you’ll want to use images related to your business. For example, you might post an image of a part from an old cooling unit and ask followers to guess what it is.
Timing of Posts
When you post can also increase or decrease your engagement. Penny shares that her highest engagement time is actually on Sunday. “I find that the highest engagement is on a Sunday which tends to increase by 52.9%. The best posting time window seems to be 10-11am EST.”
Keep in mind that this is going to vary widely based on where you are located and your customer demographics. If most of your customers are working people, then you highest engagement might be a weekday during business hours. This is where Facebook’s built-in demographics really come in handy, because you can monitor when posts are getting the most engagements and you’re gaining new followers and you can then schedule your posts during those peak times.
There is no reason to get up at 3 a.m. if that is the time of highest engagement. Facebook allows you to schedule a post at a time of your choosing on your business page. You can also utilize tools like HootSuite to schedule posts to various social media channels at specific times.
Ask a Question
If you want more comments on your posts, ask a question. Posts with questions get 100% more comments than posts without questions. There is even some research that suggests that different types of questions (who versus what, etc.) might be more effective. However, this varies so much based on audience and location, that it is probably best to test it out yourself and see what works best with your target demographic.
Penny also recommends Livestreaming as a great tool to reach new followers. “I love the new livestreaming so much because it tends to stay in the newsfeed longer, which can help to broaden your audience (and get more likes!). Use a short, snappy video title. If you need to add a longer description, do it in the comments. Tags will help folks discover your video so add any that tie into your topic.”
Start with Current Contacts
The best way to gain initial likes and shares (which lead to more likes) is to ask your current customers, family, friends, employees, and their family and friends to like and share your page. This should gain you dozens of legitimate followers in your area. The beauty of this method is that anyone who is friends with these people will see if they share one of your posts and they may like you as well.
Facebook Likes No Nos
Even though it might be tempting to use a service to generate some fake likes so people will think you have a lot of followers, it is best to avoid anything like this. First of all, if you are found out, you have violated FB’s terms of service (ToS) and you may find that your page is suspended. Also, if you have a lot of followers who aren’t in your area, customers may find this suspicious and think you are trying to scam them.
You also don’t want to spam people, invite those you don’t know, or join groups only to promote your page. Use common sense and standard online etiquette, and you should be fine.
Having a presence on Facebook can help you gain new leads for your business and reach people in your area you might not otherwise have had a chance to interact with. Keep posts about local topics whenever possible, share advice others will want to share, and spend a little time each day working on your Facebook page and promotions. Before you know it, you’ll have dozens of valid followers and a number of new leads.
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